New "shy" Camera: Panasonic quietly launched a 3rd TZ-series in 2010, the TZ9/ZS6!
We have a tape-delayed and/or stealth new camera alert, the Panasonic TZ9, a third TZ-series camera
announced released in 2010 from Panasonic. DigicamReview.com has spotted this offered at a trio of UK retail chains. DigicamReview includes a spec-comparison/differentiation between the TZ9 and the TZ8 (ZS5) and TZ10 (ZS7), all 2010 models.
Apparently this camera has also been quietly released in the US. CNet wrote a three paragraph post on this in late October 2010. It is offered at Amazon by unknown third-party sellers and it even has ten customer reviews! The camera was apparently available at Costco but it is no longer listed there.
Further "Googlification" has found this camera at the Panasonic.com site (hit the "Specs" tab for detailed specs) but it says "not available direct from Panasonic". The camera was included in the Panasonic P&S new firmware update of June 28, 2010 - see dpreview. The firmware update is the main mention of this camera at the Panasonic global site.
This is a sign of too many digital camera models in the market! Even the manufacturers themselves don't bother to announce them :-) We usually see this with basic, often sub-$100, P&S models (eg Kodak). This is perhaps the first time we see this with a non-entry-level camera! This makes it 214 new digital camera models in 2010 from the major manufacturers. I cringe to think of the total if we also counted the rebranded and generic ones like Vivitar, GE, HP, faux-Rollei/faux-Voigtlander, BenQ, DxG, Praktika, Polaroid, etc, etc, etc.